The Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee has decided to follow-up its work on the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety by holding further evidence sessions on the immediate and longer-term changes needed to improve the safety of residential tower blocks, and how improvements can be applied more widely in the construction industry.
The Committee plans to hear from representatives from the construction industry, fire safety experts, and other stakeholders as well as the Government before the summer recess.
Purpose of the sessions
The Committee will seek to explore what immediate, specific changes need to be made to regulations to make residential tower blocks safe, and remain safe throughout their life-cycle. It will also look at how the longer term systemic and cultural changes proposed by the Independent Review can be implemented, and how these apply to the construction industry more widely.
Clive Betts MP, Chair of the Committee, said:
"While we agree with the Review that there needs to be a shift in culture in the building industry, it is vital that the Government moves quickly to implement immediate changes to improve the safety of tower blocks. We want to find out what needs to be done now, such as the banning of combustible cladding, as well as ways of changing the long-term approach of the industry. By taking evidence before the summer we hope the Government will consider our findings as part of the commitments made by the Secretary of State last week to consult on banning cladding and the implementation of wider reform of the regulatory system."
Following the conclusion of the Review, the Committee wrote to the Secretary of State James Brokenshire, welcoming the consultation, but calling for an immediate ban on the use of combustible cladding in high-rise buildings.
The Committee has also previously written to Dame Judith on the issue of building regulations, and held oral evidence sessions with her upon the publication of the review’s interim report in December and final report earlier this month.